A Marketing Experiment

Oak And Mist final cover

Tomorrow I’m going to be running a little experiment in marketing.

Oak and Mist, the first book in my Ambeth Chronicles, will be free on Amazon Kindle for five days starting tomorrow. The paperback will still be full price, but the e-book – free.

I realise there are differing schools of thought on whether we should offer our work for free, and I’ve done a bit of reading and thinking before coming to this decision. However, on reflection, there were several reasons it seemed like a good idea:

  1. This is a free promotion that I get from Amazon for being part of their KDP Select programme, so I think it makes sense to take advantage of it at least once.
  2. Oak and Mist is the first book in a series of six, so by offering it free I hope to reach more readers who, hopefully, will enjoy it enough to purchase the next books in the series. Thinking back to my Marketing classes at school, I believe this is called a ‘loss-leader’.
  3. The promotion is for a limited period of time – five days only. I have heard that making the first book in a series free permanently is also a good way to attract readers but, as I’ve not yet published any other books in the series, I’m not ready to do that.
  4. No Quarter, the second book in the Ambeth Chronicles, is very close to being published, so the timing of this promotion will, I hope, generate interest leading to further sales.
  5. I have positive reviews on Amazon UK, US and Australia, as well as Goodreads. Hopefully this promotion will capitalise on the goodwill in those reviews, leading to more people deciding to download my book.
  6. I have far fewer e-book sales than paperback sales, so would be interested to see if I can increase that number.

I’ve also submitted to Robin Reads, E-News Reader Today and Freebooksy, all of whom have accepted Oak and Mist for promotion during my free offer period. I’ll also be promoting the free offer on my Facebook page and Twitter.

So I’ll let you all know how it goes. While this may seem quite a businesslike post, and a departure from my usual scribblings and musings, it is also part of the writing process. As independent authors we should be informed and able to make the right decisions for our book – after all, once we self-publish we are essentially running a business based on our own products. I’ve learnt a great deal from many generous bloggers who have shared information about their own promotions and results. Now I hope to be able to do the same.

xx Helen